Logo by: Pat Stephens, Webmaster, DESA


Them Ain't Mosquitoes .  Them's Bullets


By: Doug Smith WT 2/c


I guess everyone will know Apra Harbor is in Guam? That's where we were in Dec., 1945 when supplying power to the huge machinery that was dredging out the harbor.

 One Dec., 1945 evening at dusk, some guys were on the flying bridge and another guy and myself were in the #2, 3' gun bay and all of us were talking to each other. I hollered up to the guys on the flying bridge that I heard a big mosquito go by.  A few seconds later, another one flew by. We all heard that one! I hollered up to them, "Get Down! Those are bullets whizzing by! Call over there on shore and tell them somebody's shooting at us!"

A few minutes later an army crash boat (with a search light turned on) began running around in the direction where we thought the bullets were coming from. They found a uniformed Japanese soldier with a rifle swimming in the water hanging onto the floats that floated the huge dredge's big discharge pipe (about 3' diameter with a catwalk and lifelines on top of the pipe) that pumped the dredgings onto the beach. He surrendered to the army guys. We were later told he had a rifle and was shooting at us because he didn't know the war was over! Those bullets were too close for comfort!

Jake Dumelle, who was RT 2/c and aboard at this time has written of a similar incident. Click on the "near misses" link below to read Jake's memories of a sniper.  Near Misses

Note:  14 December 1945, Marine Pfc. W. C. Patrick Bates was killed by a Japanese sniper on Guam.  He was the last Marine killed in WWII.    
Item posted on U.S. Militaria Forum.  mc
Note: this was probably The Last Attack upon an American Ship by the Japanese Military! mc

Gonna Blow

Killing the Black Snake

Them's not Bullets

What on Earth am I Doin

Doug Smith's Service

Doug Smith's Photo Page


WWII Era | Korea War & '50s | Viet Nam & 60s |  Reunions | All Links Page  Search & Rescue

Memorial | Poetry  | Enemy Below | Taps List | Photos/Armament | History | Crews Index | Home